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PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 9:05 pm 
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There are so many knowledgeable people on this forum I thought I'd just toss out this question to see what people think: could you get better speed out of the AI if the hull was coated with something hard and smooth. I ask because my friend recently dragged one of our fiberglass kayaks across the snow and was pretty impressed with its uninhibited glide. You could go for a hell of a ride down a snowy hill! But the AI hull is plastic and even after one season mine is scratched and increasingly rough. The warren light craft trimaran/kayak is made of something like carbon fiber which makes me wonder if that wouldn't be faster. Suppose you gelcoated the bottom of the AI? Or applied something else along those lines?


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2010 10:00 pm 
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I give my hull a spray wipe down with plastic restoring stuff with UV inhibitors. Makes it very slippery.

You might have trouble finding something to stick to the plastic, plus the extra weight would slow you down too I reckon.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2010 4:14 am 
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I've been looking for some product that I could use to buff my hull up a bit and give it a bit of a shine. So the stuff you used CGM, was it worth it ? Could you reply with the product make. Might get myself some.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2010 7:20 pm 
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Slaughter wrote:
I've been looking for some product that I could use to buff my hull up a bit and give it a bit of a shine. So the stuff you used CGM, was it worth it ? Could you reply with the product make. Might get myself some.


Hmmm, I've been doing some look'n...

Originally I wanted the Hobie stuff but my local dealer didn't have it in stock so I tried Polyglaze Dash & Trim Care which has UV protectant in it. When you do some looking around on the subject you find a lot of people recommending not to use product with silicone in them. I'm not sure of all the reasons for this other than making things difficult to repaint. Anyway this polyglaze stuff, although not saying on the label, apparently contains silicone I've just found out.

Anyway, it seems alot of forums are reccommending the use of some stuff called 303 Aerospace Protectant which does not contain silicone and is supposed to be chock full of good stuff for plastics etc.

Regarding the hobie stuff, I found this post on another forum by a user called "mmiller" who seems knowledgable on the Hobie cleaner...... Anyone we know? :roll:

Quote:
The Hobie cleaner and protectant is two products by McNett.

The UV protectant is formulated to soak into plastics and vinyl to actually rejuvenate the materials. This is not like Armour all which is more of a coating that simply wipes or washes off.

The Mcnett site says:

UV Tech is a powerful protectant for use on hundreds of items including dry suit seals, kayaks, binocular housings, boat covers and a variety of outdoor fabrics and materials. Rejuvenates synthetic and natural materials and protects surfaces from sun damage and color fading. Restores gear to its original condition and prolongs gear life. Ideal for float tubes, waders & more.

McNett UV Tech™ Conditions, Seals and Protects Plastic, Vinyl, Rubber, PVC, Leather, Fiberglass, Hypalon® and More.
* Reduces Damage and Fading From The Sun.
* Replaces Lost Plasticizers.
* Protects For Easy Cleaning.
* Improves Appearance, Enhances Color.
* Nontoxic, Biodegradable, Nonflammable.

Source http://www.stripersonline.com/surftalk/showthread.php?t=648875

Anyway, next stuff I try might be the Hobie stuff or this 303 Aerospace Protectant.

Oh, and everybody says not to use Armorall.....

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2010 9:44 pm 
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Thanks for that mate.
Back to your original question though timo, trouble is almost nothing bonds to polyethyline. There are some claims by suppliers that they have a glue that will do it, but the success of these products is questionable. I thought that a full length transfer would be a good addition. Not so much as a slippage improvement but more as a protector. Then when you finally go to sell the AI, you can just peel the transfer off the hull scratches and all.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2010 11:26 pm 
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I tested Hobie Protectant against 303. IMO, they're both good products but the Hobie seems to be a little slicker. As you view the following series, 303 is on the left side of the boat and Hobie Protectant is on the right. In the first sequence both disks start out even...
Image
...then the bow is lifted until there is some disk movement.
Image
As you can see, the right side appears slicker.

In order to eliminate possible differences in disk surfaces, I switched sides and repeated the exercise:
Image Image

I ran the series twice and varied the starting points -- the results were consistent. After a few uses, the Hobie Protectant seemed to remain a little longer also. So I use the Hobie Protectant.

I'm not sure if or how much faster this makes the boat go, but it provides a nice shine at least. 8)

PS: Be careful where you put it -- both products make the surface very slick for gripping or traction purposes!


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 28, 2010 9:13 am 
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We (use to?) do 600 grit sanding for fastest surface on a sailboat hull. The thinking is that a polished surface causes the water to stick and roll on the surface. A sanded surface allows some water to attach and then the water is flowing on a water to water molecule surface.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 28, 2010 9:14 pm 
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mmiller wrote:
We (use to?) do 600 grit sanding for fastest surface on a sailboat hull. The thinking is that a polished surface causes the water to stick and roll on the surface. A sanded surface allows some water to attach and then the water is flowing on a water to water molecule surface.


Would you recommend this on the bottom of an AI?


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 6:44 pm 
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In one of Dennis Connor's books on sailing he described hull prep for an America's Cup race. After the gel coat was completed and any ripples eliminated, the final step was to rough the surface with 60 to 80 grit sand paper. While the description devolved into a discussion of which direction to sand, the consensus among world class racers was, and still seems to be, that a glass slick bottom is slower. I have not been able to determine if the coating makes a speed difference with the AI.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2010 9:48 am 
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Quote:
Would you recommend this on the bottom of an AI?


I can't imagine doing this to an AI. The difference in speed would not be enough to notice. In cat racing... I didn't do it either. The loss of the nice glossy look and the fact that a sanded gel coat would attract dirt and oils and stain. In a race, one twitch of the tiller in the wrong direction negates any gain in speed. Better to concentrate on sailing skills.

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